The competition is especially tough this year for three-row crossover utility vehicles.
The Honda Pilot has transformed itself from a boxy, somewhat roughly finished family crossover to one that’s simply better detailed all around, with the best third-row seat in the class.
The Toyota Highlander is a close second, and offers 4-cylinder and hybrid models to boot.
The Hyundai Santa Fe is a somewhat more curvaceous alternative, with a pleasant ride and impressive feature set.
The Ford Explorer offers a turbo-4 and moderate off-road ability, though crash-test scores have a major flaw or two.
Finally, the Volvo XC90 is the pick of the crossover pack this year for those who want to splurge a little; like the CX-9, it’s a little sportier and has some grand aspirations.
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|2016 Mazda CX-9Browse Used Listings||2017 Ford ExplorerBrowse Used Listings||2017 Hyundai Santa FeBrowse Used Listings||2016 Honda PilotBrowse Used Listings||2016 Toyota HighlanderBrowse Used Listings|
|21 MPG City / 28 MPG Hwy||16 MPG City / 27 MPG Hwy||17 MPG City / 28 MPG Hwy||18 MPG City / 27 MPG Hwy||18 MPG City / 28 MPG Hwy|
|Intercooled Turbo Regular Unleaded I-4||Regular Unleaded V-6||Regular Unleaded I-4||Regular Unleaded V-6||Regular Unleaded I-4|
|Small SUV 2WD||Standard SUV 2WD||Small SUV 2WD||Small SUV 2WD||Small Sport Utility Vehicles 2WD|
|FWD 4-Door Sport||Base FWD||2.4L Automatic||2WD 4-Door LX||FWD 4-Door I4 LE (GS)|
|Front Wheel Drive||Front Wheel Drive||Front Wheel Drive||Front Wheel Drive||Front Wheel Drive|
|Sport Utility||Sport Utility||Sport Utility||Sport Utility||Sport Utility|
|Automatic w/OD||Automatic w/OD||Automatic w/OD||Automatic w/OD||Automatic w/OD|
|Detailed Spec Comparison|
|2016 Mazda CX-9 vs. 2017 Ford Explorer||2016 Mazda CX-9 vs. 2017 Hyundai Santa Fe||2016 Mazda CX-9 vs. 2016 Honda Pilot||2016 Mazda CX-9 vs. 2016 Toyota Highlander|